Perhaps displaying a bit of pique, Aussie golfer Adam Scott will not be playing the Australian Open. He has played the tournament for the better part of a decade, but it seems that there was not enough appearance money left over for Scott once Jason Day and defending champ Jordan Spieth raided the bank.
Spieth received $1 million for showing up and Jason Day reportedly got similar appearance money to return to the Open after skipping out the four years previous.
Scott’s demurral means that the field is minus a former major winner.
Spieth, Day, Geoff Ogilvy and Mike Weir of Canada are the only four Major winners who will tee it up at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney.
Tournament director Trevor Herden had to do some damage control with regard to Adam Scott fans, telling the AAP, “There were some communications and discussions had and unfortunately we couldn’t reach an agreement with Adam, so he’s not playing. So it’s unfortunate and I’m sure the fans would have loved to have seen him. But we’ve got Jason as well and we’ve got a good group of players and we should have an exciting tournament.”
Day is playing the Australian Open for just the fifth time and it would seem that he has Scott’s appearance money in his pocket.
Off Scott’s absence, Herden elaborated, “I wouldn’t think he’d have his nose out of joint, but we tried hard. There was offers made and they probably weren’t good enough.”
The Australian Open faces stiff competition for world attention. There are prizemoney heavy tournaments in Hong Kong, Japan and South Africa, all competing for the top drawcards, with appearance money being handed out like the waters of the Maribyrnong.
What may be needed, according to Herden, is coordination with the US PGA Tour, such as a sanctioning agreement where the results would count toward US standings, especially the FedEx Cup.
Day and Ogilvy will be paired together in one of the early groups.